Who should take allergy and sinus medications?

Stacy Wiegman, PharmD
Pharmacy Specialist

If you have pollen allergy or sinus symptoms, over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription medications can relieve such symptoms as teary and itchy eyes, runny nose and sneezing. If OTC medications do not work, your doctor can refer you to an immunologist (allergist) to find the best treatment option—especially if your allergies involve asthma. Your doctor can also recommend effective treatment of chronic sinusitis, which lasts for more than 12 weeks.

Over-the-counter (OTC) allergy and sinus medications are considered generally safe if taken as directed, although some of them may cause excessive drowsiness. People who have high blood pressure cannot take certain decongestants. Also, if you have been confined to bed for a long period, have a family history of osteoporosis, are post-menopausal, smoke, are undernourished or use anticonvulsants, prolonged use of inhaled corticosteroids may increase your risk of osteoporosis and bone fractures.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.